A 21-year-old American citizen has been charged in relation to the deaths of two people in a crash on State Highway 10 south of Kerikeri on Monday night.

The man faces two counts of careless or inconsiderate driving causing death and has been bailed with conditions to appear in the Kaikohe District Court this Friday.

The head-on crash occurred about 11.20pm on Monday on State Highway 10 on a moderate bend north of Puketona Junction and south of Bulls Gorge, about 5km south of the Kerikeri turnoff.

The American was travelling north in a people-mover with one passenger while the other vehicle, a Subaru with four occupants, was travelling south.

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SH10 was closed for several hours following the smash.

Police have yet to release the names of the deceased, aged 24 and 26, who are understood to be from the Kerikeri and Kaeo areas.

One other person in the Subaru was seriously injured and flown to Whangarei Hospital by the Northland Rescue Helicopter.

The occupants of the people mover suffered only minor injuries.